This is not only a story about a Weimaraner becoming the first AKC Grand Champion; it’s a story of one woman’s committment to the Weim as a versatile dog and her dedication to the breed.
Liz Krupinski had already been in Weimaraners for 12 years in 2006 when she found just the right sire, Lucchese (CH Win’Weim GraytSky Cowboy Boots JH) for her girl Gavi (Ch Windchymes Spirit Dancer SH RA SDX RD V). This breeding produced Stoli, the culmination of a breeder’s dream for a versatile dog that looked good, loved to hunt and with an excellent temperament.
In September of 2007, Liz was diagnosed with leukemia. Stoli had already finished his show Championship title and his Junior Hunter title by this time, but friends stepped up and continued on with him. Husband Tim says, “Although Stoli wasn’t at her side it was the weekly and daily updates that I know keep her going.”
And what great updates they were! It was his 2nd birthay, and the same day that Liz returned home from a bone marrow transplant when Stoli made history by earning his first Best in Show as a Senior Hunter. As Liz gained strength she handled him to an Award of Merit at the Eukanuba show, and then a Best in Specialty Show. Tad Walden handled him to his Master Hunter title a week later, passing 6 for 6. All before age three and another notch in the history books! Liz was working towards obedience and agility with Stoli when leukemia struck again, this time with no happy ending. Liz passed away on March 16, 2010.
Tim continues the story, “Now with the one show Liz didn’t make, Tad and I promised Liz we would take Stoli to Westminster. We would keep him in the show circuit for one more year just to keep him out there for the slim chance at Westminster. Little did we know on his 4th birthday he would once again make history becoming the first AKC Grand Champion. I know Liz was smiling over him from above.”
Now if you are a Weim lover, I am sure you believe like I do, that the bond between Weim and owner is one that can’t be explained; it’s true and deep. Doesn’t this story exemplify it so perfectly? Such a bittersweet tale, and just as Stoli watched over Liz, I know Liz is watching over Stoli now.
We salute you, BIS BISS GCH Monterra’s Best Bet MH, and share in the pride that a Weimaraner is the first AKC Grand Champion! We also salute the dedication of breeders like Liz Krupinski; it wouldn’t have happened without her.